Acceptance

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Chapter Sixteen

[ANDREW]

From: Christopher Johnson.

Topic: You’re useless.

You think you’re so special, don’t you? I saw the Q&A you did up online yesterday. You’re disgusting, you’re an ugly piece of shit walking the planet because everyone has so much pity that they can’t just do away with you. You’re a cunt, a desperate slut and a self-made sicklier just looking for attention. You’re scum. I just wanted you to know that.

I’m not sure why I was tearing up, but I was. I stared down at my phone, not knowing what to do or what to think. I tried to remind myself that Christopher was a bastard, and there was no reason his views on me personally, but I couldn’t help myself. I couldn’t hold the tears that had started to threaten their movement down my cheeks.

“Is something wrong?” Ethan asked as I walked into the living room and up to the dining table, my Gmail still open on the phone in my hand.

“It looks like something’s wrong,” Ethan said plainly as he drew up the chair next to me on the dining table to sit down.

“Well, nothing’s wrong...” I trailed, avoiding his gaze as I quickly left his mail. Ethan’s gaze moved to my phone with a suspicious look but he let me be.

“Good morning.” Devein’s voice resounded in the living room as she walked in. She had Roxanne on her tail. She paused dramatically in the middle of the room to give a dog yawn.

“Morning,” I replied as Ethan nodded in her direction. She came up to us before pulling out a seat for herself.

Devein had been with us for the past week and had become more open to me and Ethan. I was trying to see if I could get her registered at a local middle school for the meantime. She was kin to learn and had already invaded my library in her short stay.

“You look good,” Ethan said, complimenting her, and making her lips break out into a big ass grin as she fiddled with the collar of her pink nightgown. Ethan had gone out with her yesterday to shop for some clothes. My shirt and the one dress she came in weren’t practical.

“Thanks,” she said finally, taking a mug from the center tray on the table before attempting to make herself a cup of tea.

I tried to get the email off my mind as we had breakfast. Ethan squeezed my hand encouragingly from time to time, showing to me that even though I’d lied to his face he was still going to provide a comfort of some sort.

“Are you guys getting married?” Devein asked all of a sudden, making me pull my hand from under Ethan’s before indulging in a nervous cough.

“No, what makes you think that?” I asked, trying hard not to get up and retreat. I wasn’t so good at handling direct inquisition and the feelings the question gave me at that moment was between running and dying.

“Two guys under the same roof, sharing the same room, and occasionally eating each other’s faces off. Come on, I’m young, not stupid,” Devein said with a shrug.

I shut my eyes in disbelief. Sometimes I wished Devein was a lot more like people her age. You know, a lot less knowledgeable.

“It’s not like that...” Ethan trailed, speaking up. “Maybe just a little bit, but not the way you think.”

I sighed brushing my hair back from my forehead. I just wanted the floor to open up and swallow me up right now.

She’d caught us sharing an innocent kiss before. I’d just prayed that she actually didn’t see us and it had all been in my mind. I guess that’s not the case.

“Then you’re dating, right?” she asked, making me and Ethan look at each other warily. Were we?

“Not exactly...” I finally answered, making her frown. “Don’t think about it too much.” I quickly added, making her confused features soften reasonably.

“I don’t get it though...” She trailed, playing with her used tea bag, “You’d look good together.”

I think I died and resurrected under two seconds out of embarrassment. I was so embarrassed that I almost forgot about the email — almost.

The rest of breakfast went by in silence and Ethan left the table immediately it was over to get ready for his lectures.

“You know where the chicken feed is, don’t you?” I asked Devein as she responded with a nod. “Could you go check my study for Hector, he must be hungry.”

Devein left the living room and came back minutes later with Hector and a book in hand. She placed him on the living room floor before heading out of the house with a tray before coming back with a hand full of chicken feed on the tray.

Hector eyed the tray hungrily, clucking as it was placed on the floor beside him. He soon got onto the tray and began to feed.

Roxanne gave a low growl directed at Hector, making me scold her lightly.

“I’m off,” Ethan informed us as he walked into the living room and towards the main entrance.

I smiled, nodding his way as Devein waved him off. He left soon afterward, closing the door behind him.

I sighed, picking up my phone again. I’d deleted the email and had decided to forget about it. I looked on as Devein watched an animated show on TV.

“Devein,” I called out as I proceeded to clear out the dining table.

“Hmm?” She answered in a low tone, flipping through the channels as Roxanne made to sit right in front of the TV.

“Can you help me get my computer from the study? And bring the charger along please.” I asked, putting off my phone. She got up soon after, heading to the study before returning with my laptop, its charger and a little extra something in hand.

I laughed, raising my brow at my tablet, “I didn’t ask you to get that.”

“Can I use it please?” she asked as she placed my computer right in front of me on the dining table. I gave a low chuckle before imputing the tablet’s password. She’d grown addicted to the games in it since I first gave it to her.

A wide smile broke across her face as I handed it over to her.

“Don’t forget to clean up after Hector,” I said as she turned off the TV and tidied up the sitting room.

“I won’t,” she said, picking up the almost empty tray of bird feed from the floor, exiting the room with tray and tablet in hand. Hector followed her, giving a cluck of protest while Roxanne settled with crawling under the table to rest her nuzzle on her paws.

I worked on the computer for a few hours before I bumped into an hour old email from Christopher.

From: Christopher Johnson.

Topic: Ignoring me won’t help.

You can’t ignore me. You’re no better than the fucked up emotional bitch I knew a few years back.

“Shit,” I sighed, trying to keep my mind in check. I was on the verge of screaming and losing it. I’m not so sure why Christopher was making it his personal duty to torture me.

I took in a deep breath before deleting the email. I tried to keep it out of my mind for the rest of the time I was on my computer but sometimes my eyes got hazy with unshed tears, quick ones making their way as droplets onto my PC’s keyboard. Not feeding the troll is not as easy as it sounds.

I shut my PC down, realizing I possibly could do any productive work now.

Ethan came back later in the evening when Devein had tired herself out playing angry birds and consuming the only snack I stocked up on- Protein bars.

“She’s asleep already?” Ethan asked, dropping his bag on the living room sofa.

“Yeah,” I muttered, looking up at him. I’d spent most of the day watching TV or just thinking.

“Hmm,” Ethan hummed, settling beside me on the sofa. It was ridiculous that he was sitting so close to me on a sofa that could comfortably accommodate four people. He was so close that our thighs were touching through our jeans. I wasn’t complaining; it was quite comforting.

I placed an idle hand on his thigh as I continued to watch TV.

“What’s this?” Ethan asked, leaning in to rest his head on my shoulder.

“I really don’t know...” I admitted in all honesty. The only thing my mind could make out was foreign actors babbling in a language I didn’t understand. I really don’t know when I changed the channel to Zeeworld.

“I missed you,” Ethan said all of a sudden, making me look towards him as I idly brushed his long hair away from his face.

“It’s just been hours,” I pointed out, making him mutter a small ‘exactly’.

“What happened this morning?” he suddenly asked, turning his head on my shoulder so he could look up at me.

“Nothing...” I trailed, hardly meeting his gaze.

“I’ll wait for when you’re ready to talk, okay.” He sighed calmly before turning his attention back to the TV. I gnawed at the inside of my cheek feeling a little guilty about keeping things from Ethan.

“Andrew?” Ethan called, making me hum in response.

“Is it odd that I always want to touch you? Like, be with you all the time?” Ethan asked, snuggling into my shoulder, “Just asking, not like I want to change it. It’s a much-welcomed disorder if you ask me.”

I laughed as he attempted to lean into me further, “No. Well, I guess there’s nothing weird about that, I feel the exact same way about you.”

“You do?” Ethan asked, his voice coming off as that of surprise.

“Yeah,” I muttered, running a hand through his hair as we continued to look on at the TV. Being with him was terribly comforting. It was like the comfort was radiating directly from him. I was getting addicted to that — feeding of that comfort.

“I can’t even see the subtitles from here,” Ethan admitted, making me chuckle.

“She’s asleep, right?” Ethan asked obviously referring to Devein. I muttered a small yes, making Ethan raise his head. He felt my face with his fingers before leaning in to kiss me.

The gentle mashing of lips soon turned feverish and warm. It was soon filled with moans and soft mewls, making us forget about the soft hum of Hindi in the background and our recent pact to keep it down.

The few times I’ve been with Ethan I’d have to admit I felt things. Today’s feelings were a pure raw passion that coursed through me to the smallest nerve in my body. The feeling was so intense that I couldn’t stop shivering after the act was over.

Ethan had held me close, molding our bodies into one as we basked in the aftermath.

For the brief period, I forgot about my problems big and small. I forgot about my insecurities, I forgot I had a draft that I hadn’t started due next weekend, and best of all I forgot about the Emails from Christopher.

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